David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Synthese 63 (1):1 - 34 (1985)
The theoretical construction and practical use of prior probabilities, in particular for systems having many degrees of freedom, are investigated. It becomes clear that it is operationally unsound to use mutually consistent priors if one wishes to draw sensible conclusions from practical experiments. The prior cannot usefully be identified with a state of knowledge, and indeed it is not so identified in common scientific practice. Rather, it can be identified with the question one asks. Accordingly, priors are free constructions. Their informal, ill-defined and subjective characteristics must carry over into the conclusions one chooses to draw from experiments or observations.
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References found in this work BETA
Leonard J. Savage (1954). The Foundations of Statistics. Wiley Publications in Statistics.
Claude E. Shannon & Warren Weaver (1949). The Mathematical Theory of Communication. University of Illinois Press.
Glenn Shafer (1976). A Mathematical Theory of Evidence. Princeton University Press.
A. W. F. Edwards (1972). Likelihood. Cambridge [Eng.]University Press.
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